Quality Standards for re-use and repair centres and networks

May 29th, 2014
Process-oriented quality management system by ISO 9001:2008, QM handbook

Process-oriented quality management system by ISO 9001:2008, QM handbook

CERREC handbook on quality management for the re-use and repair process chain

One of the main aims of the CERREC project was to develop transparent and universal quality standards that can be applied in all partner countries. These common standards will support the ongoing harmonization of differences in ecological standards and regional economies and help to raise the quantitative increase of re-use and repair.

It has been the task of Workpackage 5 (WP5), in cooperation with the transnational CERREC partners, to define quality standards for the process chain in re-use and repair centres and networks and make them applicable for individual companies.

After a first survey for the identification of quality needs and a profound literature analysis on existing models in the project, the central work within WP5 aimed at creating a handbook for quality management for the re-use and repair process chain that would be easily adoptable by diverse re-use centres and networks.

The survey and research had shown already in the beginning that framework conditions in all 7 CERREC-countries were still very diverge, due to different national laws and regulations on re-use and repair and the diverging stages of the implementation of the of the new Waste Framework Directive (Directive 2008/98/EC). Consequently all project partners came to the agreement that it would be beneficial for the project to concentrate the work in WP5 on developing a flexible system for quality standards. The system can be adopted by a re-use and repair centre and modified according to individual framework conditions to make sure national rules and regulations are complied and expectations by costumers and stakeholders are met at the same time.

The key to introducing common quality standards will be the establishment of a quality management system in re-use and repair centres with the help of the handbook. With the implementation of this quality management system, process in the organisation will be analysed to identify needs and enhance structures within the centre or network. Quality management aims not just at ensuring a certain quality of a product, but in fact concerns the whole organisation and process-chain behind the product, which includes quality planning, quality control, quality assurance and quality improvement.

The quality management handbook was presented at the evaluation conference on the “EcoMondo 2013” in Rimini, Italy, were the handbook and some of the process diagrams where shown to the public. The handbook is structured according to the core processes in a re-use centre: procurement, treatment, testing and retail and accompanied by individual documented statements on quality policy and its objectives, documented procedures in the organization and finally internal documents designed to guarantee effective planning, operation and control of its processes. The process diagrams in the attachment of the manual shall facilitate and structure processes in the re-use centre.

The handbook will be tested within the pilot actions of the project and can already be downloaded via the CERREC homepage (www.cerrec.eu/downloads/tools/).